If you’re in the market for a new soundbar, then the Samsung HW-R650 might just be the right one for you. We consider it a budget model from Samsung, and it sits at an attractive price point.
This soundbar delivers a clear 3.1 channel sound. The dedicated center channel speaker makes it even easier to hear the dialogue while watching movies, while the wireless subwoofer provides just enough bass for our liking without overpowering the highs.
Set up is very easy with the input and output options provided, and it pairs seamlessly with your Samsung TV or with a compatible Bluetooth device.
Design & Style
The Samsung HW-R650 is rectangular measuring 41.7″ by 2.2″ by 3.5″ and is just short of being as long as a 55 inch TV. The bar itself is constructed of a dark black plastic that has a metal grill on the front to protect the six speakers inside.
Sitting under our 65 inch TV at home, the soundbar took up very little space and meshed well with what else we have on our TV stand.
The wireless subwoofer is made from wood, measures in at 7.9″ by 13.9″ by 11.9″ and will easily fit under a table. It has a fabric covering over the speaker to help stop dust. We found the overall build quality and design rather pleasing and solid, especially for a budget system. Be careful of the fabric cover over the subwoofer though as to not damage the internal speaker.
What’s In The Box?
- User manuals.
- A wall mounting template and bracket.
- Screws and washers.
- Soundbar power cable.
- Soundbar power brick.
- Remote control and batteries.
- Optical audio cable.
- Subwoofer power cable.
What’s Does It Sound Like?
Well, this soundbar is in a 3.1 channel configuration and has a frequency response of 42 Hz to 20 kHz and delivers 180 watts of power. It has a dedicated center channel speaker and a wirelessly active subwoofer with a 6.5” driver delivering 160 watts.
The center channel speaker provides clear dialogue when watching movies or music. The active wireless subwoofer has a nice bass response to give you that little extra kick without taking over the higher frequencies, whether you are watching a movie, playing games, or listening to music.
The overall system gets rather loud, covering your average living room, family room, or bedroom easily with very little distortion, even at higher volumes.
What About Surround Sound 5.1, 7.1, or Atmos?
When it comes to surround sound quality through this soundbar, it is about average for this type of setup. This is because you don’t have physical speakers behind you or to the sides. This results in a less immersive sound experience that seems to be coming from the front instead of behind you or to the side of you.
However, Samsung does provide wireless surround sound kits that you can easily pair with the soundbar. These will give you more of a total surround sound experience if that’s what you’re after.
The soundbar has a decent set of inputs to connect to your external devices. It has a standard 3.5 mm analog audio input and an optical input that supports Dolby Digital and DTS formats. There is a USB-A type slot in the back for a flash drive so you can play audio files.
You will find one HDMI output that is shared for audio and video. It also has a full HDMI input and an HDMI ARC port that supports Dolby Digital and DTS. This will allow you to connect your Xbox, PlayStation, or even a PC to the full HDMI input and then use HDMI ARC to connect to your TV.
This, in turn, will give you better overall audio and visual experiences while using those devices. However, for wireless connectivity, you will be limited to Bluetooth only. Built-in Wi-Fi or Chromecast is not available with this system, unfortunately.
Since this is a 3.1 channel system, any audio sources that are higher than that, for example, 5.1, 5.2, 7.1, or 7.2 channels, will be automatically downmixed into 3.1 channel audio.
The front of the soundbar has a small white LED screen located behind the metal cover on the front of this system. It will display your input source and the volume level that you’re listening at.
Next, you’ll notice four buttons accessible on the side of the main bar. You can use these buttons to control your input source, the volume, or even turn your soundbar on or off. You’ll notice that the LED screen on the bar itself will confirm your selection that you choose on the remote.
The wireless remote control for the soundbar gives you the ability to turn it on and off, change the settings, mute, adjust the sound mode, pair Bluetooth devices, and to adjust the volume up or down. Batteries are included.
Well, Samsung has an app called Samsung Audio Remote, which can be used to control this soundbar via Bluetooth and is available on iOS and Android. This will let you send music to the soundbar, but overall, it does have limited functionality.
This Samsung soundbar has some nice sound features. The Smart Sound Mode automatically analyzes what you’re listening to and optimizes it accordingly to provide better overall sound quality. For the gamers out there, this system comes with a Game Mode that will enhance effects while playing.
The dialogue enhancement feature helps make voices in movies come out much clearer as well as a seven-band graphic equalizer and a subwoofer adjustment level to control the amount of bass produced by the subwoofer.
You can use the night mode function, and it will adjust the dynamic range as well so as not to disturb your neighbors in the evening. The HDMI ARC connection also supports HDMI CEC, which gives you the ability to use some of your TV remote capabilities to control the soundbar itself when it is connected.
And if by chance you forget to turn off the soundbar, you need not worry about it consuming power all night long. This is because, after five minutes of inactivity, it’s auto-off feature will turn it off for you automatically. It is also ENERGY STAR® Certified.
Samsung HW-R650 Pros & Cons
- 3.1 channel with a dedicated center channel speaker.
- HDMI arc for pass-through.
- Built-in Bluetooth connectivity.
- Easy to use remote control.
- Excellent build quality.
- Limited 1-year warranty.
- ENERGY STAR® Certified.
- Doesn’t provide an immersive surround sound experience.
- No built-in Chromecast or Wifi.
- The Subwoofer could do with a little more bass.
If you’re not convinced that the Samsung HW-R650 is the one for you, then please check out our reviews of the Best Wireless TV Speakers, the Best Bookshelf Speakers under 500 dollars, the Best Powered Speakers, the Best In Ceiling Speakers, and the Best In Wall Speakers currently available for more options.
In our opinion, this is a very good option at a very reasonable price. We were thrilled with the sound quality overall, especially for what we consider a budget system. The dedicated center speaker was a very nice welcome when watching movies and TV shows.
If we had to nitpick, we would say the bass from the subwoofer could have been a touch bit deeper, but for most people, we don’t think that will be an issue.
The Bluetooth connectivity performed extremely well, and the remote app was also very easy to use with the speaker, and it played music from a cell phone flawlessly without dropping out.
The ability to add more wireless speakers is also a great option, even though it will set you back quite a bit. So keep that in mind if you’re looking for a more immersive overall sound experience.